GuluWalk Gala Raises $50,000

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A sold-out crowd of over 300 enjoyed an unforgettable evening Thursday night at the first ever GuluWalk Gala, an event staged by Athletes for Africa in support of the abandoned children of northern Uganda.

Aside from helping raise awareness, the event brought in over $50,000 that will be used to support programs on the ground in the war-torn region.

Hosted by CBC Radio’s Matt Galloway and held at the spectacular Barbara Frum Atrium (CBC Building) in downtown Toronto, the Gala featured a keynote speech by former Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations Allan Rock, a performance by Juno Award-winning artist Donné Roberts, and an extensive live and silent auction.

Several other guests were in attendance Thursday night to provide a voice for the children of northern Uganda, including Halifax MP Alexa McDonough, who visited the region in mid-January, Ugandan-born Edmonton MP Rahim Jaffer, former Olympic swimmers Jen Button and Liz Warden, TSN soccer analyst Dick Howard, and GuluWalk co-founders Adrian Bradbury and Kieran Hayward.

The silent and live auctions, which provided excitement throughout the evening, included such items as a Chantal Kreviazuk concert experience, signed jerseys from the Toronto Raptors’ Chris Bosh and the Toronto Maple Leafs’ Bryan McCabe, a full week pass for two people to attend the 2007 Bell Canadian Open, and a pair of signed basketball jerseys donated by two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash, a continued supporter of GuluWalk and Athletes for Africa.

The gala took place four months after 30,000 people in 82 cities and 15 different countries took to the streets for the second annual GuluWalk, in which citizens urged the world to support peace in northern Uganda. That event raised over $500,000 for programs for a generation of children being left behind.

Allan Rock applauded GuluWalk for its significant success over the last two years. “GuluWalk has given tens of thousands of us a way to stand up, step forward and speak out about the catastrophe in northern Uganda, with a message that’s loud and clear: protect the civilians. Save the children. Stop the war,” he said.

The 2007 GuluWalk Gala was presented by AstraZeneca Canada and included support from Artez Interactive, the Canadian Auto Workers Union, the Elementary Teachers of Ontario, Pepsi Canada, Silver Lining Ltd. and Heenan Blaikie LLP.

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